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So, I'm thinking of starting to prep. But I have a big question.

I am having a hard time rationalizing or conceptualizing why people prep in the first place. I guess what I'm having trouble with is the long-term.

What are you prepping for? I see a lot of people/videos etc with 72 hour BOB's. What scenario(s) are people prepping for? I know that everyone will have a slightly different answer, but can I get some concrete examples? For example, let's say someone who is a really advanced prepper has a BOB, and even has a cabin in the woods somewhere stocked with tons of food/ammo etc. If another country attacks and there's troops going door to door killing everyone, does this advanced prepper plan on shooting his way out of the town and making it to his cabin? And then what, live there forever? Why is it 72 hours? What happens after the 72 hours?

I guess that if there was a hurricane like Katrina, it would be wonderful to have 72 hours worth of stuff, but what do you do then?

And what about someone like me, who goes to work a few miles away, never goes hiking/camping type things. What types of things should I be prepping for? I don't live in a big city where there might be a terrorist attack, chemical attack. I don't see a natural disaster of epic proportions happening. We did have a tornado, but even if the whole town disappeared I could just go to the next town.

My first thing I'm doing is putting some stuff in my car, should it break down and my phone isn't charged. Water, energy bar, rain jacket, blankets/winter stuff. But that's all I can think of needing.

Now I'm rambling... Does any of this make sense?
 

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Really it's going to depend on you and where you live. If your area is prone to long term power outages (5+ days) or severe weather you would prep for those emergencies first. If you're not concerned about the economy collapsing or some other man made event then there is no reason for you to prep for them. Me personally after having some major weather events hit the area in the last few years this is my primary concern. I don't really consider myself a prepper yet since I'm still in the information gathering stages, I have a few things set aside and we generally keep enough food on hand so that we only have to shop every 2 weeks. I think your off to a good start with putting some general survival items in your car so you already see a need for some prepping, how involved you get in it is really up to you.

-Infidel
 

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If you look at it historically it become clear that your chances of being in a SHTF situation is very high. Just keep going back by generations no matter what country you live in. My generation hasn't seen any big event here in the USA but my father lived through WW-2 and his father WW-1 and the great depression and his father the civil war. Maybe two more generations and it was the American Revolution. And this is just the USA almost any other country if you start going back by generations you would see even greater disasters. Take Europe just go back a couple of generation and you could be in the death camps, WW-2 mass bombing, WW-1 which was much worse in Europe and the 1918 Flu Pandemic. I C/P the following ( The influenza or flu pandemic of 1918 to 1919, the deadliest in modern history, infected an estimated 500 million people worldwide--about one-third of the planet's population at the time--and killed an estimated 20 million to 50 million victims. More than 25 percent of the U.S. population became sick, and some 675,000 Americans died during the pandemic.) Go back a little farther in Europe and you are at the black plague C/P the following (In Medieval England, the Black Death was to kill 1.5 million people out of an estimated total of 4 million people between 1348 and1350). What would happen if 40% of everyone over here died and how many must have been near death now I would call that a teotwawki situation instead of a SHTF event. That was 660 years ago so if you go back 1000 years and each generation being 40 years that one incident alone would be a 1 in 25 chance. You would have almost a 50% chance that you would be in the dark ages.
 

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Ok, ill try to answer these 1 by 1.

From what my understanding and perception of things is, the 72 hour BOB (or any BOB, for that matter) isn't something you live off of. Its just enough to keep your safe and healthy while you move from one location to the next. So they aren't so much designed for a specific disaster or scenario so much as they are designed to get you to a location where you will be safe from a specific scenario.

For example, let's say someone who is a really advanced prepper has a BOB, and even has a cabin in the woods somewhere stocked with tons of food/ammo etc. If another country attacks and there's troops going door to door killing everyone, does this advanced prepper plan on shooting his way out of the town and making it to his cabin? And then what, live there forever? Why is it 72 hours? What happens after the 72 hours?
If another country attacks our country, there will be resistance from the general populace like no other. Most everyone who honestly feels they will not be safe unless they "Bug out" will fight to the last bullet. So, shooting our way out of town? Yes, if the situation calls for it.

The 72 hour limit, in my personal opinion, represents how long it should take to get from your present location to your destination while carrying a reasonable amount of food, water, and equipment while on foot. Anything more than this would probably weigh you done more than it would be worth. If the human body could realistically carry more food without penalty, 72 hours would probably be 96 hours. or more.

I guess that if there was a hurricane like Katrina, it would be wonderful to have 72 hours worth of stuff, but what do you do then?
Your would hopefully be at a safe destination at this point. remember, any BOB (or INCH, or get home bag, ect.) is designed for use while your on the move. You cannot think that you will be able to keep all the things you would need to survive for any considerable length of time in a backpack. You need a house, trailer, vehicle, something relatively large to store things in. And forget about hunting and fishing to sustain yourself- if theres a true SHTF situation, everyone and their mother will be trying to do the same thing, and it will become slim picking very quickly.

And what about someone like me, who goes to work a few miles away, never goes hiking/camping type things. What types of things should I be prepping for? I don't live in a big city where there might be a terrorist attack, chemical attack. I don't see a natural disaster of epic proportions happening. We did have a tornado, but even if the whole town disappeared I could just go to the next town.
Expect the worst, hope for the best. And its the fact that you may not see a major SHTF event coming that could kill you. Thats the thing about prepping- you're preparing for anything to happen, at any time.

I understand your confusion, but if you keep asking questions like you have, you'll probably get any misconceptions ect. cleared up in no time. You just need to be willing to to learn.
 

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The 72 hour Bug out Bag probably is somewhat of a government ideal. Emergency Information Center Many government agencies and the red cross says everyone should have a 72 hour kit because that is how long it sometime takes to get government assistance. But if you are prepping look at your own situation and decide for yourself what is best.
 

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In my opinion, a 72 hour bag is more or less for natural disasters where you have to evacuate but can't depend on FEMA to feed you right away.

I am not a "bug out to the woods" kind of guy, but I think a lot of preppers just want to be able to lay low if some widespread event (natural - like an EMP, or man made - like riots and looting because food stamps are cut off) takes place. I think the assumption here would be that some sort of order would be restored in 2 or 3 months. The US was hit by a large EMP in the 1800's and will get hit again sooner or later, and food stamps almost were cut off with the recent government shutdown, so being ready for this type of event is reasonable.

I'm in the process of buying a property in a low population density area that I think would be a lot more survivable in ANY kind of event, so I guess you could say I'm bugging out now. My basic idea is to more or less disconnect from the rat race, grow my own food, raise some chickens, and generally be almost totally self-sufficient. This will include making my own electricity and maybe making my own fuel too. Once in place, I will be ready for just about anything.

If something happens in the meantime, I'll be thinking of being more of a ninja than a Rambo. "Shooting your way out" isn't really a viable option, in my opinion. I have guns and know how to use them, but that's an absolute last resort, and one I wouldn't expect to survive.

I would rate the threats (within the next 20 years) as follows...

Economic disaster (Great Depression) = 35%
Major civil unrest/civil war = 20%
Major EMP (natural or nuclear) = 15%
Widespread pandemic (natural or man-made) = 10%
Major volcanic eruption/asteroid strike causing a "nuclear winter" = 5%
Invasion/war on US soil = 5%
Other events = 5%
Zombies, Aliens, Gamora/Godzilla/Creature from the Black Lagoon/the Blob = Yer freaking kidding me, right?

Localized natural disaster that knocks out power for 2 or 3 weeks = 85%
 

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In my opinion, a 72 hour bag is more or less for natural disasters where you have to evacuate but can't depend on FEMA to feed you right away.

I am not a "bug out to the woods" kind of guy, but I think a lot of preppers just want to be able to lay low if some widespread event (natural - like an EMP, or man made - like riots and looting because food stamps are cut off) takes place. I think the assumption here would be that some sort of order would be restored in 2 or 3 months. The US was hit by a large EMP in the 1800's and will get hit again sooner or later, and food stamps almost were cut off with the recent government shutdown, so being ready for this type of event is reasonable.

I'm in the process of buying a property in a low population density area that I think would be a lot more survivable in ANY kind of event, so I guess you could say I'm bugging out now. My basic idea is to more or less disconnect from the rat race, grow my own food, raise some chickens, and generally be almost totally self-sufficient. This will include making my own electricity and maybe making my own fuel too. Once in place, I will be ready for just about anything.

If something happens in the meantime, I'll be thinking of being more of a ninja than a Rambo. "Shooting your way out" isn't really a viable option, in my opinion. I have guns and know how to use them, but that's an absolute last resort, and one I wouldn't expect to survive.

I would rate the threats (within the next 20 years) as follows...

Economic disaster (Great Depression) = 35%
Major civil unrest/civil war = 20%
Major EMP (natural or nuclear) = 15%
Widespread pandemic (natural or man-made) = 10%
Major volcanic eruption/asteroid strike causing a "nuclear winter" = 5%
Invasion/war on US soil = 5%
Other events = 5%
Zombies, Aliens, Gamora/Godzilla/Creature from the Black Lagoon/the Blob = Yer freaking kidding me, right?

Localized natural disaster that knocks out power for 2 or 3 weeks = 85%
Another possibility that I see that was never possible in history is a digital attack. Basically every bit of money in peoples savings, checking, 401k's, pensions, and anything else is in digital form. It is scary to think about. That is what is meant by fiat money they don't even have to print it just make up and move numbers around.
 

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In my opinion the most effective preppers are those that approach prepping like a serious hobby. Their prepping is balanced unlike me with my too many guns and my silver coin collecting. They are well rounded preppers yet do not let it control normal living.

I'd say the largest group prep for natural disasters. This group can last for about 72 hours mostly with comfort in mind. It is stretching it a bit to include them as preppers.

I'm not the best person to take advice from but I do not think the serious peppers will disagree.
1. Do not waste your money on a bunch of prepackaged kits. Making your own result in knowing best how your kit functions.
2. If you cannot get to it then it is worthless. Usually your vehicle is where you are. Start there.

If one of these guys disagrees listen to them.
 

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Prepping, to me, is just an investment, I try to buy things I already use, or can use. You state your not into camping or hiking, but think of it as the essentials first. Water, Shelter, food, and ways of keeping those three things yours. Security.
Now assume, even in city life,(I live the city life), that EVERYTHING for whatever reason goes blank. No water in the pipes, no electricty, no sewer, no grocery store, no natural gas. Clean drinking water, in the city, could be hard to find, especially if sanitaion stopped for some reason.
Shelter-Living in the city, without police keeping animals in line, imagine how secure your home is? The police can barely keep the animals at bay right now. imagine no fear of police showing up if someone decided to take everything you have?
Shelter to me also involves security, so for me its staying home with a gun close.
Food- My pantry and freezer are stocked, my fridge is empty, I am at work way morethan Im home, so If i buy perishables(milk, bread, eggs), they sometimes go bad before I use them.
In short, Im really not preparing for anything in perticular, just investing in things I will eventually use, and then restock.
 

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I think everyone develops their own reasons for why they prep. For me, it started right after I had my first kid and learned about peak oil. I got very lax about it and recently started in again with worries about economic collapse and civil unrest. I want to know I can just lay low with my kids and hopefully keep them out of harm's way if things get bad.

For reasons more people can relate to, think about winter storms, flash floods, wildfires or other natural disasters. We have all of those here but not tornadoes or hurricanes. My knowledge is limited, but I think a large portion of the US has earthquake risk. Any of these things can cause supply lines to break down, power to fail or other issues that disrupt our regular way of life.

A few years ago, not long after I started prepping the first time, my husband was laid off. We were trying to live on $500/mo income. Our preps were very, very welcome then.

Prepping can be a really great hobby AND a hedge against inflation. If you start with things, such as food and general consumables, that you know you will eventually use, you're not hurting anything to stock up. As prices increase, food on hand can be a better investment than a basic savings account. If nothing bad ever does happen, you've done nothing but save yourself some cash and get some extras on hand to allow you to shop less.

And welcome to the forum!
 

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I look at it as a form of security for myself and my family. We often get the natural disasters here due to weather. We have been totaly surounded by flood water with no way in or out for as long as a week at a time, several different times over the years. Bad weather has cut off the food supply to the little towns in these rural communities. with out back up what would we do?
I think of these as short disasters. I make sure we and all animals have plenty of food to last through something like this at all times. I also make sure there is a way to cook this food for the human part of our family, and a way to keep us warm if our electricity is cut off. No dependence on anyone else. Can't depend on anyone else to help us through crisis anyway.
In the long term my thoughts are about the poor economy. What if you lost your job? the national average on getting another is now 18 months. can you go that long without an income or a drastic reduction in your income? I can now because I have worked to become free from the live paycheck to paycheck world we live in. I watch what others go through and it scares me. I don't want to loose everything I have worked so hard for simply because of a paycheck.
Look at what is going on around us right now with the governments games over the past 2 weeks. We as a nation are a joke. We have such a huge debt how can it every be paid? that 17 trillion works down to each of our families owing something like 150,000. Horrible! what happens when China and Russia decide to call in the debt?
I try to spend only what is necessary and not make debt I can not pay. Credit is a bad thing, not good. We shouldn't spend what we don't have, and always plan for when we may have nothing to spend. We have become so dependent on having that paycheck every 2 weeks and for most we can't seem to manage to stretch it to last till the next one. We spend as much as we can get our hands on and more with easy access credit, with no thought to what will happen when that money supply stops.
 

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I just did a quick inventory and all I got is approx. 9 days worth of food/water for two persons. These are all ready-to-eat food (no cooking involved), mind you.
Our prepping is highly likely for pandemic or natural disasters like an ice storm, or if food distribution is cut off and there's panic and unrest.
Our finances are limited so we're most likely to stay in our home (we've got nowhere else to go). I'm trying to build up our stockpile of ready-to-eat food to last for 4-6 weeks, and build up supplies that will require minimal cooking. I'm stocking bottled water, aiming for 12 weeks or more.

I want to make sure that the food I'm prepping is reliable, thus I don't think I'll stock anything I haven't tried. I'm buying brands I've used before, and am testing other brands.
 

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Inor and I started prepping years ago - makes a nice hobby we can share. We intend to bug in given that the rest of the family would hopefully be joining us. Mostly for us it has been fun to learn new skills, cheese and sausage making, canning new things, gardening experiments, etc.
What is really nice is knowing that if I run out of something in the kitchen I can usually find it in the food "bunker". When Inor went through a slow work period, all we had to purchase was some produce and eggs and milk for five weeks. At the moment we have our oldest daughter and our grandson staying with us (after leaving her sob husband finally) and I can help set up her new kitchen next month out of our stores.
IF a shtf event occurs it is really comforting to know we can survive - a better looking insurance policy than a piece of paper or the government saying you are covered.
 

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I'm prepping and stockpiling to be prepared. I doubt that I ever need to use my preps but knowing that I have them is just like insurance. There have been several times preps have come in handy. Have you seen the price of beef in the grocery stores this year? Not an issue if you have at least a side of beef in your freezers. Being prepared helps in the event of a natural disaster, economic or military issue. I just don't want to be waiting on the government to rescue me.

At my primary home, I have enough staples to make it a month. At my bug out location, I can go for a couple years.
 

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I am not a kinda the Sky is falling guy, The chances of a disaster on a national or world wide scale I would say is 1% to 2%.

What is very relistic is local Natural disasters, flooding, Fires and storms. Those are the things that My family is ready for. Personally I have kinda turned into into a Hobby, something to do that the whole family can enjoy and do things together with.

Now with that said bring on the ZOMBIES :)
 

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I worry more about that freak once in 500 year snow storm that cuts off power and supply for a couple weeks. Maybe an earthquake strikes and takes out some bridges that limit supplies in a certain area for a week or so. Those are the most likely in my area, that or a massive flood.
 

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Economic collapse, massive food shortages, natural disasters, government collapse, civil unrest, riots & looters, etc..etc.. Not to be "Johnny Raincloud", but people don't plan to fail, they just fail to plan. ~ "but it'll never happen to me, here..." - Meanwhile, those that depend on you for their care, like your family, are left in a desperate situation like everyone else - dependent on the government...I'm glad you are getting started.
 

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I don't prepare for any one SHTF event. I try to be prepared for anything and everything. I have a 2 stage BOB. A light weight one if I have to walk out, and a secondary bag if I can drive out. In my location I don't worry too much about a natural disaster, so I'll probably bug in rather than bug out. With all the rail traffic in my area, a derailment type accident would be the most likely reason to bug out. I agree with the idea that in our high tech world, a cyber attack could take out our way of life. Watch the up coming movie on Nat Geo channel next Sunday night. It's a what if scenario for a cyber attack taking out the grid.

While I don't believe in ZOMBIES, I believe the zombie hoards will come if the disaster is a real SHTF event. Eventually I will have to live my house to my BOL.

(ZOMBIE= supposedly mythical undead who like to munch brains. zombie (lower case) = the unprepared masses who will eventually run out of food and come looking for me to eat my food)
 

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In my opinion, a 72 hour bag is more or less for natural disasters where you have to evacuate but can't depend on FEMA to feed you right away.

I'm in the process of buying a property in a low population density area that I think would be a lot more survivable in ANY kind of event, so I guess you could say I'm bugging out now. My basic idea is to more or less disconnect from the rat race, grow my own food, raise some chickens, and generally be almost totally self-sufficient. This will include making my own electricity and maybe making my own fuel too.
Those two statements right there are why my wife and I do what we do.
1. We never want to be dependant on FEMA for a darn thing.
Thats why we:
2. Have a rural homestead much like prepadoodle is working toward.

Living in Florida there is a very real possibility of a hurricane knocking out electricity for weeks, flooding roads, tearing out bridges as rivers rise, etc. We have been thru those scenarios. We made it because we were prepared for it.

A prudent person looks ahead and prepares for disaster. The imprudent will think only of today and get what's coming.
 
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